0800056 - PRODUCED BY THE DEFENSE NUCLEAR AGENCY, ENEWETAK CLEANUP No date Color 13:15
This video shows the actions being taken to cleanup the islands comprising Enewetak Atoll so that the previous inhabitants could return to live on some of them. The inhabitants were forced to relocate to other islands in 1948 when the United States began atmospheric testing of nuclear devices at the Pacific Proving Ground. Over the 1948-1958 time period, 43 tests were conducted on or near Enewetak Atoll.
Numerous decaying, abandoned buildings are shown that had to be demolished, while others were still suitable for use by the returning people. Homes, schools and government buildings had to be built.
The film details the radiation studies conducted to determine the extent of contamination and the uptake of radioactive particles by plants. Some parts of the Atoll would never be suitable for habitation because of the extent of contamination. One of the decontamination activities planned was removing the contaminated soil, transporting it to craters on one of the highly contaminated islands, and encasing it in concrete.
Those organizations cooperating in the cleanup effort included the Atomic Energy Commission, the Coast Guard, the Defense Nuclear Agency, and a marine biology firm.